Sony Alpha Batteries

Sony Alpha Battery Life Tips

The Sony Alpha mirrorless cameras have notoriously short battery life. This comes with the territory of an incredibly lightweight camera packed with awesome features. Often after a few hours of constant shooing you'll find your battery is completely dead. The good news is that with a few modified settings and an awareness of your battery usage, a single Sony battery can last an entire five day backpack trip. Here are my Sony a7 battery life saving tips, pulled from my personal experience and scavenged from the Internet.

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How To Build A Planter Box

How To Build A Planter Box

So you want to build a planter box? Awesome! Gardening is not only fun but good for the soul. Humans have been growing food for thousands of years, and you can too! First, you'll need a container for all that dirt. This guide will point you in the right direction to build a simple planter box that will last for years. The most difficult part will assuredly be getting motivated to drive to the hardware store. So roll up your sleeves, jot down the tools and materials you'll need (listed below), make a trip to the hardware store, and get building.

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Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro E Mount Lens Review

Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro E Mount Lens Review

You probably landed here deep in the process of researching Sony's full frame macro lenses for E Mount cameras. Well kudos to you for researching first because amazing glass ain't cheep. My advice to you is do your due diligence; research all the options and make sure this lens is the perfect lens for you. I did hours and hours of research before pulling the trigger on this sweet baby. The Sony 90mm Macro is an amazing lens and I haven't regretted the purchase for even a second. Keep reading for photo examples and an in-depth review of the Sony E-mount 90mm f/2.8 Macro G OSS lens.

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AD&D Optional Rules

AD&D Optional Rules

Trying to figure out which optional rules to play with? It can be overwhelming. Advanced Dungeons & Dragons comes jam packed with optional rules for customizing the game's mechanics to perfectly fit your group's playing style. AD&D is so flexible that every group I've ever played with has had a slightly different flavor of awesome and offered a fresh experience.

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D&D Dungeon Master Screen

AD&D House Rules

Dungeon Masters often weave their own house rules into game play. Unlike almost every other board game, the Dungeon Master's guide actually encourages the DM to tweak, change, add, remove, bypass, or ignore any and every rule in the book they feel has a good reason to be modified. This is the genius behind D&D. It is not restricted by traditional board-game limitations. Here I've collected some of the custom house rules I usually game with.

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D&D Dungeon Trap Ideas

D&D Dungeon Trap Ideas

A good Dungeons & Dragons adventure needs some good dungeon traps! Here are just a few trap ideas I quickly sketched up to get your dungeon master thinkers workin'.

The best traps are ones your characters have a chance of overcoming with some patience and collaboration, but a misstep, failed check, or blatant disregard of obvious clues may leave the party impaled or under some ancient being's mind control poison. Which sounds like a great way to start your next adventure.

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Awesome Movies With Sword Fighting

Awesome Movies With Sword Fighting

Welcome to my list of awesome Movies With Sword Fighting! Notice the emphasis on the word awesome? I'm sure your first question is going to be, did Krull make the cut? Well! I think you know the answer to that! These aren't in any particular order except maybe nostalgia. Also, Star Wars didn't make the cut because, despite being a massive Star Wars fan, light saber fighting is NOT sword fighting. Keep in mind this list is totally opinionated. I am curious if you agree with my opinion of awesome here, and if you don't agree, or I missed some exceptional movies with sword fighting, I'm excited to hear about them! So let me know in the comments.

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Legacy MTG Booster Packs

Legacy MTG Draft

I recently splurged on a bunch of legacy Magic The Gathering booster packs, as I've been known to do in the past. I'll let you in on my little secret: I let the 1% cash-back on my credit card build up for over a year, then I blew it all on sixteen pristine legacy booster packs from the 90s & 2000! Everything after that was history. I dropped a few text messages to some very lucky friends, we cracked open a few beers, then indulged ourselves opening up these ancient Magic The Gathering booster packs while drafting some awesomely nostalgic decks. Some of these packs were over twenty years old! Which is kinda crazy to think about. I'm amazed these packs even exist unopened anymore.

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Cursed Helmet

D&D Campaign: The Cursed Helmet

The following adventures are loosely based on a campaign I'm DMing with some of my closest friends – so far we've all had quite a few good laughs. It has been a silly riot with plenty of intense moments, complete disasters, and an epic struggle of good vs evil. I try to balance an overarching storyline with lots of good distractions and random side quests. Feel free to copy, borrow, steal, etc.

Hopefully these adventures inspire you to create your own or can work directly for your party. Have fun modifying and molding these into something useful and specific to your characters. You can mix and match these quests and fine-tune them for your party's level, or you can run them in order and play out this loose storyline.

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D&D Quest Ideas

D&D Quest Ideas

So you gathered a group of the finest players in the land, created characters, filled out their detailed character sheets, and even devised intricate back-stories to give them some personality. Whether you are deep into a campaign and looking for some good side quest ideas, or you are starting fresh and need an adventure or two while you figure stuff out, here are some fun Dungeons & Dragons quest ideas that I have dreamed up, just for you.

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Sony a7ii Accessories and Lenses

Sony a7 Accessories

If you have landed here you are one of two people: either you are looking to buy a Sony A7 (and you totally should) or you are already a happy owner and you are shopping for a new lens or accessory. If either of those resonate with you, then welcome to the Mirrorless Sony camera club!

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Old School Magic The Gathering Deck Boxes

Old School Magic The Gathering Decks

I love collecting and playing 90s Magic cards. It's that amazing feeling of nostalgia that many of us get when we see that early edition print quality; how we can instantly identify each of those early editions' unique look and feel. I love how Unlimited is slightly blurry and overexposed, Revised images are crisp and the borders are exact, and 4th edition is ever so slightly saturated – or Alpha with its slightly more rounded corners. The artwork in the new editions is good, but it's almost too good – probably because it is now all done in Photoshop with cutting computer edge graphic tools. Not to say that the new artwork isn't amazing, but in the old editions you can really see all the brush strokes, the color pencil lines, the roughness, and the hard work that went into each amazing art piece. Each edition has it's own little quirks and surprises. It's amazing to think about the evolution of the game and where it started.

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Homemade Oblivion Coasters

DIY: How To Make Coasters

Disappointed there isn't much Oblivion swag? So was my wife, Meg, who is obsessed with Oblivion (it's kinda hard not to be—Ovlivion, is without a doubt, one of the greatest video games ever made).

We needed coasters (about a year ago) and Meg got the brilliant idea to make a set of coasters with each of the cities in Cyrodiil! And she was off to the research station (the Interwebs).

After collecting 9 high resolution graphics of the cities and buying most of the materials we needed, we moved, and all the materials got lost in move! Over eight months later we miraculously found the box with the tiles and supplies in them, hidden away on a top shelf in the kitchen. The opportunity was upon us and Meg printed the graphics, bought the last few materials, and went into nerdy DIY crafting mode!

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Book Case

Every Book I Have Ever Read

Here is a list of every book I have ever read – that I can think of that is. I'm sure I'm missing a whole bunch, but this is a good stab at remembering. This list consists mostly of fantasy and science fiction novels (because that's the cool nerdy stuff). I haven't included boring stuff like any text books I have read, or any of the awesome comic books I have read (over and over). I also included the books I could remember from my childhood, so yeah, there are some 5th grade reading level stuff here, but I would like to point out that I also tackled Prisoner of the Horned Helmet in 5th grade too. Additionally I would like to note that even though I'm a bit of a completionist, if a book doesn't grab me in a hundred pages or so I will typically stop reading it with no regrets.

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D&D World Map

How To Draw D&D World Maps

Hello fellow DMs! I have been drawing maps for D&D, and just for the fun of it, since sixth grade. During that time I would like to think I have learned a thing or two about RPG cartography, and what players expect and enjoy. Every good fantasy book has a map and so should your D&D campaign!

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Comic Book Collection

My Top Five Favorite Comic Books

Looking for some good comic books to read? Here are my top five favorite comic books and graphic novels. Keep in mind that I haven't read all the comic books and graphic novels in the world – so this isn't a "best comic books ever" guide or anything. This is just a few of my favorites that I have been lucky enough to own or borrow.

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Shadow of Mordor

Why Shadow of Mordor Kicked Ass

Wow. Not sure where to start. This game was freaking amazing. I'll tell you all about it below. I completed with 100% and loved absolutely every minute of it. Its got a narrative that completely sucked me into J.R.R. Tolkien's amazing world of Middle Earth. I'm a huge Lord of the Rings fan and this game didn't let me down. I loved that it took place prior to the story we all know and love and I'm okay with the fact that it only loosely fits into the history of Middle Earth.

I don't understand those who choose to knock this game. If you didn't like it then I guess nothing is for everyone, and I get that. Haters gonna hate. Personally I didn't find much not like about Shadow of Mordor. I was thoroughly entertained. It was an excellent and really solid game. It wasn't striving to be anything it isn't. Shadow is exactly as it should be and where it shines it really shines.

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28 Days Later

28 Days Later

Awesome Freaking Zombie Movie

Nice! So I just watched 28 Days Later (2002) for the second time and it totally rocks! Not only is it as scary as all hell, it's extremely well made, acted, and directed. Cillian Murphy does an excellent job as Jim. Beginning with him awakening from a coma in an abandoned hospital to his merciless vigilante killing spree at the end, the audience experiences the protagonist's numerous character transformations throughout the film. Armed with an excellent script, good actors, and masterful cinematography, Danny Boyle brings to life a frightening and realistic story of human survival. At the core 28 Days Later is about human nature and what people will do to survive when faced with life and death situations. The fact that it is a zombie story completely enhances the desperation and ecstasy of the horrors in this film. It is executed with great precision, a trait that is not common to most zombie films. I had at least 2 really good jumps so watch out! This film has it all: brutal survival, rabid zombies, and the evilness of true human nature. Hopefully you enjoyed 28 Days Later as much as I did, and if you haven't seen it yet, proceed with caution.

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Lara Croft Tomb Raider

Just Finished Tomb Raider 2013 And It Was Totally Amazing

I just finished playing the 2013 release of Tomb Raider and it was totally amazing! But that's no surprise since it gets 9.1 (Amazing) on IGN. As far as third person adventure games go I really liked Tomb Raider. Recently I played through the first three Uncharted games, as well as The Last Of Us (all of which I extremely enjoyed), and I would say that Tomb Raider totally holds its own in comparison. All these games have similar combat mechanics, but Tomb Raider just feels silky smooth. Targeting and dodging in combat have an excellent pace. Melee combat is dynamic and gets better and better as you upgrade your hunting skills. Combat, exploring, and cutscene transitions are seamless and Lara's interaction with the environment is completely dynamic. As Lara Croft climbs, swims, squeezes, and explores the ancient island ruins of Yamatai she must fight to stay alive, hunt for her survival, and do everything she can to save her friends. This game is jam packed with unique situations and I felt that it had very little repetitive gameplay.

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